A young lady stands in the middle of a comic book market and declares, “My name’s Becki.” She flips her hair of hair in orange and then launches into a Scottish accent. “And this is Merida from Brave..”
Becki Turner a 28-year-old woman from Waldorf Maryland, is at AwesomeCon in Washington, D.C., along with thousands of other attendees in extravagant costumes. Turner says she’s more reserved when she’s not an actual Disney princess or a Scottish fairy from the classic Disney film. When I’m playing cosplay I’m less nervous. I’m less anxious when I’m playing cosplay as I do when I’m on my own, like having a bit of social anxiety.”
She struts around in her green dress and is wearing an elongated bow. Her smile is contagious. Turner declares she believes that Merida is a tough female who is fierce and independent. She is today equally strong and self-sufficient.
In the 60s and 70s, American science fiction conventions allowed people to dress up as science fiction or fantasy characters. Cosplayers were the first to dress in costumes inspired by Star Trek and Star Wars. The trend has increased. Costumes are typically based on comic books, anime or video games, films, and television shows. It’s easy to imagine any person from a popular science-fiction or fantasy universe, and you’re likely to meet people who have worn that costume. Numerous subgroups of cosplay are special like the “bronies” who are males who dress as My Little Pony ponies.
Cosplayers are a group of people who dress as characters and attend conventions in the U.S., Europe, and Japan. It is a space where geeks come together, have fun, and meet their science fiction and fantasy fellows. Cosplayers love the chance to become different individuals or objects.
It’s much more than just a dress-up game. They reveal something about their personalities that’s not always apparent in the outfits they wear. Ni’esha Wongusfrom Glen Burnie, Md. has a 6-foot-long foam pistol, and is wearing an edgy pleather dress. She declares, “I am Fortune from Metal Gear Solid 2.” “I consider myself to be an introvert. When I got all the straps and buckles put on, grabbed the gun, and sat in front of the mirror for the first time did it come as a surprise? That was the moment I fell in love with. It has made me feel more powerful and confident.
Leland Coleman Leland Coleman, a Nashville, Tenn. resident believes that his costume is the transformation of. Leland Coleman was inspired by the character Captain America during the last year, as he shed 45 pounds. He created a Renaissance Marvel Comics version of Captain America. The costume “gave him the strength.” It’s like I’ve become more comfortable in it, and I am now.
The cosplayers play with clothing’s subtle influence on us. Since the beginning of time, people have utilized clothes to influence, seduce and even entertain. It is possible to feel and appear different when wearing certain clothes. Psychologists are working to find out how clothing can influence our thinking and the extent to which it affects us. Adam Galinsky is a psychologist at Columbia Business School who spoke to Hanna Rosin of NPR for the podcast and the show Unvisibilia. Galinksy led a study that required participants to wear a unisex white coat. Participants were told that they were wearing a painter’s smock, while others were told that they were wearing a doctor’s coat.
Then he assessed their attention and focus. The people who believed that they were wearing the coat of the doctor were more focused and attentive than those wearing the painter’s smock. The patients wearing the doctor’s coat had 50% fewer mistakes during a test that was focused on detail. Galinksy believes that this is because people feel more like doctors when they wear doctor’s coats. Galinksy says that doctors are perceived as precise, meticulous, and thorough. The reason is symbolic association. The clothes become you when you put on your clothes.
This phenomenon is evident in virtually every attire with a symbolic meaning. A study discovered that fake sunglasses manufactured by individuals were more likely to be liars and deceive than genuine sunglasses. It was like counterfeits offered them an advantage in slyness. We can activate objects that are infused with an underlying meaning when we pick them up. It wears and is ours to keep,” says Abraham Rutchick a psychologist from California State University Northridge.
Rutchick discovered that people who wear formal attire for interviews tend to think more abstractly and focus more on the bigger picture than those wearing casual clothes. For example, those who wear formal attire might argue that locking the doors is more like locking the home and is an abstract idea instead of turning the key, which is a mechanical element.
Rutchick believes that clothes have a twofold effect. Rutchick says, “When I dress in the clothes I feel certain that manner.” Rutchick says, “I also feel how others perceive me. This will affect my behavior and how I think about myself.”
This feedback can have a significant impact on the cosplay crowd, where attendees hurry to compliment one another on costumes and snap pictures.
Riki LeCotey is an acclaimed Atlanta cosplayer, who performs the stage name, Riddle. She claims that the energy she gains from cosplay is due to both the costumes and the reactions of others. “Someone tells me, “You’re the perfect Black Cat” (a character from SpidermanSpiderman]. You’re thinking “Oh they believe that I’m sexually attractive.” The outfit makes me feel extremely sexy. She claims that she’s sexually attractive.
LeCotey stated that emotions can last for a long time after the event. “You sort of recall the costume after taking off the costume. You may also go through photos and be reminded. It’ll stay in your mind if you repeat it over and over. It’s almost like having an emotional memory of your sexuality. LeCotey says that cosplaying made her feel more confident than she did when she was shy as a teenager 17 years ago.
LeCotey says that cosplay is primarily about embodied characters that you love. LeCotey thinks that picking characters that she can identify with is about finding someone with whom she has a connection or admires as having the same traits. The results show that a quarter of cosplayers are with her. They pick their characters based on their psychological characteristics or the stories they tell as per a study published in The Journal of Cult Media.
While clothing is an instrument for these traits but it doesn’t need to be lavish. Jennifer Breedon, a Washington, D.C. AwesomeCon attendee said that she woke up this morning and decided to dress in the clothes of Black Widow. She’s wearing an all-leather jacket, combat boots, as well as black tights. It’s not Natasha Romanova’s catsuit made of leather and it’s not a S.H.I.E.L.D. patch that can determine the Marvel Comics hero. It is effective for Breedon. “And Today, I am channeling that character, the one who feels a connection to them.
It’s a more subtle form of cosplay, which involves characters that wear simple or casual outfits. It’s not immediately obvious however, it’s there. She claims she knows the nature of it.
It can be difficult to spot the costumes like Jessica Jones’s gray jeans and hoodie and boots, which are all part of Marvel Comics. Breeden says that the outfits were of great assistance to her during a tough moment in her life when she felt lost and isolated.
Breedon 32-year-old Breedon said that she was feeling like a failure decade back. Breedon was afflicted with an eating disorder, addiction to drugs, and even a suicide attempt. She also struggled with an eating disorder, addiction to drugs, and attempted suicide. After rehabilitation, she said that her health and lifestyle were in a state of flux. “Even now, there’s a sense of guilt and I must deal with it each day.”
She graduated from law school and was able to secure employment. She announced her new job to all. She was fired after a couple of months, declaring that it wasn’t the best match. She was depressed and was thinking, “I’ll never feel good enough.”
Breedon says she was three days in her home and watching Jessica Jones for three days. In her hoodie of grey, she wore exactly like Jessica. She states, “I had to be Jessica.” “The hoodie was my identity. Jessica Jones always says, “I do not want to work in your law firm or S.H.I.E.L.D. or whatever. or whatever. She was free to choose what she liked. This made me think about whether I was supposed to be a part of that company. I just felt at peace.”